Why did Germany sink US ships?

Why did Germany sink US ships?

Between this proclamation and the United States' declaration of war on April 6, Germany sunk ten United States commerce ships. The Housatonic, the first ship lost following the proclamation of unlimited submarine warfare, was transporting wheat to the British government. The Lyman M, the second ship, was en route from San Francisco to New York with a cargo of iron ore.

The Washington and the Concord left Boston together for Liverpool, England, with troops who had fought in France. On May 13, both vessels were sunk by German submarines within sight of each other off the Irish coast. The Wabash, another transport carrying soldiers home from France, sank on July 17 after hitting a mine off the Massachusetts coast.

Nine more ships were lost between August 24 and September 2. All were American transports carrying troops or material back from Europe. Four were torpedoed without warning in the Mediterranean; five were sunk by mines.

The sinking of these ships prevented America from joining the war against Germany. President Woodrow Wilson refused to approve a bill authorizing the use of military force until after the election of 1916. When he did sign it into law on October 8, sixteen more ships were lost, making 1917 the deadliest year for shipping since the beginning of the century.

The Germans didn't just kill men aboard these ships: they killed hopes, dreams, and optimism for the future.

Why did Germany do unrestricted submarine warfare?

He felt that destroying a few neutral commercial ships at the commencement of an unrestricted submarine warfare campaign would deter most ships from trading with Britain. On February 18, 1915, Germany said that it would launch a trade war against nations who traded with Britain. The German government believed that this would force Britain to agree to peace terms.

Unrestricted submarine warfare was declared by Kaiser Wilhelm II. The policy went beyond what Germany had done before and included attacks not only on warships but also on transports and other vessels suspected of carrying goods for the British army or navy. The aim was to cut off supplies to Britain which was trying to fight World War I. Germany's main adversary in the war, France, protested strongly against the policy but did nothing to stop it. Other countries were also wary of getting involved in a conflict between two great powers but did not want to see Germany win either way.

Submarine attacks increased dramatically after they became effective early in 1915. By the end of that year, more than 700 Germans and Britons were known to have died. This was because naval authorities in both countries began to warn their merchant fleets to be careful where they traded. If they didn't, they might find themselves trapped with no choice but to fight it out at close quarters. This made submarines powerful weapons that could not be ignored.

The issue of unrestricted submarine warfare came up for discussion several times during the course of the war.

Why did German boats patrol the Atlantic and Caribbean?

German U-boats and Italian submarines sought to impede the Allied supply of oil and other resources at numerous sites. They sunk ships in the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico, and assaulted Antilles coastal sites....

Battle of the Caribbean
400 merchant ships sunk17 submarines

About Article Author

Lindsay Mowen

Lindsay Mowen teaches students about the periodic table of elements and how it relates to their lives. She also teaches them about the various properties of each element, as well as how they are used in different types of technology. Lindsay loves to teach because it allows him to share knowledge with others, and help them learn more about the world around them.

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